Thursday, October 23, 2014

Doll-A-Day 272: Soft Dolls Week: Linnea

  Today's soft doll is Linnea.

Linnea is a doll based on the character from the 1987 book "Linnea in Monet's Garden", illustrated by Lena Anderson...

...about a little Swedish girl and her elderly friend, Mr. Bloom, who take a trip to Paris to see the paintings of Monet, and to Giverny, to see Monet's real garden that was the subject of so many of his paintings.(I'll say! How many paintings did this guy do of his lily pond? Did he not get out much or what?)

Monet, on the right, in his garden, 1922. Wow. Other than the guys, this photograph looks like a painting. Monet's son left the property to The French Academy of Fine Arts in 1966. After being restored, the property was opened to the public in 1980, and became a popular tourist attraction.

This version of Linnea is 11" tall, but there was also a 17" version.

 The book introduces children to Monet, and impressionist art.

She should also have a straw hat. Mine is missing hers.

There are also smaller Linnea dolls.These are 6" tall.

I love little cloth dolls. I actually have these, but my version of the first one is missing her apron/smock, and the third one has loaned her pants to a Tutti and Todd friend I made from a Peter Paniddle head and a Tutti body.The clothes are a perfect fit.
In fact, there are almost as many different Linnea dolls as there are Monet paintings of that pond.

Nahh...maybe not.

Holy cow! Monet really liked his garden.In fact, he once said, "My most beautiful work of art is my garden." He certainly worked hard on it. He had gardeners working on it for years, and he constantly gave them detailed orders of what he wanted done.
Monet began painting the water lillies in 1899. He painted 250 paintings of the water lily pond.

Oscar-Claude Monet was born in Paris France in 1840, and died in 1926. He was part of the impressionist movement. In fact, Impressionism gets it's name from the Claude Monet painting Impression, soleil levant,(Impression, Sunrise).

Impressionism is  described by Wikipedia thus: "Impressionist painting characteristics include relatively small, thin, yet visible brush strokes, open composition, emphasis on accurate depiction of light in its changing qualities (often accentuating the effects of the passage of time), ordinary subject matter, inclusion of movement as a crucial element of human perception and experience, and unusual visual angles."

It's described by me as: paintings made up of tiny strokes of the brush,with tiny bits of colour, making rough looking images that look better from a distance, where the tiny specks of colour merge into a solid object and look realistic.
Linnea was so popular that several products bearing her likeness were produced, including the dolls, doll clothes,puzzles, and the book "Linnea's Almanac".

More than once the theme of the flower show at Chicago's Marshall Fields store, (Now Macy's), was Linnea in Monet's Garden. Scenes from the book were recreated as amazing window displays.
I wonder whatever happened to the wonderful figures created for these displays. They probably ended up in some dumpster. They should have donated them to a library or children's art museum.

All the flowers and other plants in the window displays were real.

Tomorrow we'll conclude soft dolls week.

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